I keep my milk in gallon jars in the refrigerator. Our cow, Happy is keeping us well stocked! I skim the cream off after 24 hours. I don’t have a cream separator yet so I use a ladle and get as much of it as I can, then stir the rest of the cream back into the milk for drinking. We like to have a little cream in our milk anyway, it tastes better that way.
I skim the cream and ladle it into quart jars and keep refrigerated until I have 5 or 6 jars, then I pull the jars out of the fridge and leave it on the counter to sour for 2 days. You can make butter with fresh cream but souring it makes it taste better. You can make butter with pasteurized cream, but you can’t sour it. Either way, the cream must be room temperature before beginning to make butter.
To churn, I pour 1 quart of cream into the food processor and turn it on. It takes only seconds, sometimes minutes for it to turn to butter. I pour off the buttermilk. It can be saved for baking. Then I add cold water to the butter, turn on the food processor for 5 seconds and then pour off the water. I repeat this washing step 5 or 6 times, until the water pours off clear. It’s important to remove all the buttermilk or else the butter will go rancid quickly.
Now it’s time to paddle the water out of the butter. I found rinsing with cold water rather than just cool water, makes it easier to paddle the water out. It’s still a lengthy process, it takes about 5 minutes to get it all out. Turn the butter onto itself, as you would if you were kneading bread.
When all the water is out, (or most of it) add your salt to the butter. This enhances the taste and help preserve the butter. I add a rounding ¼ tsp of sea salt to the butter produced from one quart of cream. Start with less and taste it to make sure you haven’t over salted it. Work the salt into the butter well with the paddles.
I spoon the butter into small plastic containers and freeze them. Each of these make a ½ pound of butter. Once they’re frozen, I pop them out, wrap them with plastic and put them back in the freezer.
This is how I make butter. Seems to work for me. 🙂